Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak this Tuesday evening. We’ll have another update for you on Wednesday morning.
1. Scotland school exam results issued
Pupils in Scotland have become the first in the country to receive their results under a system of awarding grades using estimates by teachers, after exams were cancelled due to the pandemic. Overall pass rates in Nationals, Highers and advanced Highers have increased. But opposition politicians are warning there will be a “deluge” of appeals after a moderation process saw many grades lowered from their original estimates.
2. World Health Organization caution over Russia vaccine
The World Health Organization has urged Russia to follow international guidelines for producing a vaccine against Covid-19 after the country said it would begin mass vaccinations in October. The Russian vaccine is not among the WHO’s list of six that have reached phase three clinical trials, which involve more widespread testing in humans. Read about the potential vaccines under development in the US, UK and China that have reached this stage.
3. Pizza Express considering closing 67 restaurants
Pizza Express is the latest restaurant group to undertake a financial restructuring after trading was halted by the pandemic. The company is considering closing 15% of its UK restaurants – 67 sites – which would mean the loss of 1,100 jobs. Meanwhile, 800 jobs are to go from Currys PC World as the chain overhauls its store management structure to adapt to increasing online sales.
4. Furlough payments to 9.6m workers
Figures from HM Revenue and Customs show the government has covered the wages of 9.6 million employees under its job retention scheme, with the Treasury paying out almost £34bn since April. A further £7.8bn has gone to meet income support claims for self-employed workers. If you’re wondering what happens when the furlough scheme ends in October, have a look at our explainer.
5. Seven reasons not to give up on poetry
Poetry will become an optional subject area in England next year, under changes to English literature exams in response to the coronavirus pandemic. But how relevant is it today? Here are some reasons to continue studying poetry.
And don’t forget…
…social distancing means keeping apart from people to restrict the spread of coronavirus. Find out about the rules currently in place.
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